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music reviewmusic reviewmusic review  out of 4 Music Review: Darktown

Artist: Steve Hackett
Genre: Rock
Release Date: September 1999

Review by Keith "MuzikMan" Hannaleck
3 stars out of 4

Steve Hackett's legacy has reached legendary proportions over the years due to his contributions to progressive rock in bands like Genesis. His solo career has also left its imprint upon the history of progressive rock. Although I haven't heard too much of his solo work, this release and his recent Feedback 86 releaese give me a good idea of what direction Hackett went on two of his outings.

"Darktown" is a much better solo effort. Hackett seems much more focused and the music is more codified and driven with purpose, whereas "Feedback 86" was a unfocused mish mash of cold and calculating technology. His guitar work is exemplarily, and many of the songs have a world feel to them, as many different instruments are employed. Its like what Peter Gabriel has done in the past, filling the studio with a wonderful cross section of musicians from around the world to create a rock and roll hybrid all his own.

I know that Steve Hackett has garnered rave reviews and the respect of his peers over the years, and I am a little disappointed that I couldn't rant and rave about his work. I hope I have the opportunity to hear more of his catalog in the near future so I don't have to look at his solo career through just two CDs. I have a feeling he did a lot of great work over the years that I just haven't had the privilege to hear yet. I believe regardless of my feelings that these two discs were well worth the listen and any prog rock diehard would find some value and entertainment in them, I certainly did, especially in all of the MP3s.


1. Omega Metallicus performed by Sinclair, Sir Douglas / Hackett - 3:48
2. Darktown performed by Ian McDonald / Hackett / Julian Colbeck - 4:59
3. Man Overboard performed by Siedlaczek Choir / Hackett - 4:17
4. The Golden Age of Steam performed by Roger King / Jerry Peal / Children's Choir - 4:09
5. Days of Long Ago performed by Jim Diamond / Billy Budis / Hackett - 3:23
6. Dreaming with Open Eyes performed by John Hackett / Jerry Peal / Hackett - 6:54
7. Twice Around the Sun performed by Sinclair, Sir Douglas /
Roger King / Ben Fenner - 7:15
8. Rise Again performed by Hugo Deganhardt / Billy Budis / Aron Friedman - 4:26
9. Jane Austen's Door performed by Roger King / Hackett - 6:13
10. Darktown Riot performed by Roger King / Hackett - 3:10
11. In Memoriam performed by Siedlaczek Choir / Roger King / Hackett - 7:59


Steve Hackett - Harmonica, Piano, Narrator, Rainstick, Sequencing, 12-String Bass Guitar, Guitar Technician
John Wetton - Bass Samples
John Hackett - Flute, Pan Pipes
Roger King - Drums, Flageolet, Keyboards, Engineer, Mixing, Post Production, Wood, Guitar Engineer, Rhythm Coordination
Ian McDonald - Saxophone
Jerry Peal - Strings, Bells, Engineer, Mixing, Woodwind Arrangement
Doug Sinclair - Bass
Billy Budis - Cello, Engineer, Mixing, Management
Hugo Degenhardt - Drums
Aron Friedman - Piano, Keyboards, Drum Producer
Jim Diamond - Vocals
John Colbeck - Keyboards
Bob Fenner - Guitar, Recorder, Producer, String Arrangements, Drum Programming, Design, Mixing, Post Production, Choir Coordinator



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